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Testing the Untestable: Model Testing of Complex Software-Intensive Systems

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "TUNE" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: 4365

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Luxembourg [LU]
 Project website
 Total cost 2˙307˙932 €
 EC max contribution 2˙307˙932 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2015-AdG
 Funding Scheme ERC-ADG
 Starting year 2016
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2016-09-01   to  2021-08-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    UNIVERSITE DU LUXEMBOURG LU (ESCH-SUR-ALZETTE) coordinator 2˙307˙932.00


 Project objective

Software-intensive systems pervade modern society and industry. These systems often play critical roles from an economic, safety or security standpoint, thus making their dependability indispensible. Software Verification and Validation (V&V) is core to ensuring software dependability. The most prevalent V&V technique is testing, that is the automated, systematic, and controlled execution of a system to detect faults or to show compliance with requirements. Increasingly, we are faced with systems that are untestable, meaning that traditional testing methods are highly expensive, time-consuming or infeasible to apply due to factors such as the systems’ continuous interactions with the environment and the deep intertwining of software with hardware. TUNE will enable testing of untestable systems by revolutionising how we think about test automation. Our key idea is to frame testing on models rather than operational systems. We refer to such testing as model testing. The models that underlie model testing are executable representations of the relevant aspects of a system and its environment, alongside the risks of system failures. Such models inevitably have uncertainties due to complex, dynamic environment behaviours and the unknowns about the system. This necessitates that model testing be uncertainty-aware. We propose to develop scalable, practical and uncertainty-aware techniques for test automation, leveraging our expertise on model-driven engineering and automated testing. Our solutions will synergistically combine metaheuristic search with system and risk models to drive the search for critical faults that entail the most risk. TUNE is the first initiative with the specific goal of raising the level of abstraction of testing from operational systems to models. The project will bring early and cost-effective automation to the testing of many critical systems that defy existing automation techniques, thus significantly improving the dependability of such systems.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2019 Chaima Boufaied, Domenico Bianculli, Lionel Briand
A Model-driven Approach to Trace Checking of Temporal Properties with Aggregations.
published pages: 15:1, ISSN: 1660-1769, DOI: 10.5381/jot.2019.18.2.a15
The Journal of Object Technology 18/2 2019-10-29
2019 Claudio Menghi, Shiva Nejati, Khouloud Gaaloul, Lionel C. Briand
Generating Automated and Online Test Oracles for Simulink Models with Continuous and Uncertain Behaviors
published pages: 27-38, ISSN: , DOI:
ACM Joint European Software Engineering Conference and Symposium on the Foundations of Software Engineering (ESEC/FSE ’19) 27th 2019-10-29
2019 Ben Abdessalem (helali), Raja
Effective Testing Of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems Using Evolutionary Algorithms And Machine Learning
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
2019 Alferez, Mauricio; Pastore, Fabrizio; Sabetzadeh, Mehrdad; Briand, Lionel; Riccardi, Jean-Richard
Bridging the Gap between Requirements Modeling and Behavior-driven Development
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
IEEE / ACM International Conference on Model Driven Engineering Languages and Systems (MODELS) 22nd 2019-10-29
2019 Abualhaija, Sallam; Arora, Chetan; Sabetzadeh, Mehrdad; Briand, Lionel; Vaz, Eduardo
A Machine Learning-Based Approach for Demarcating Requirements in Textual Specifications
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
IEEE International Requirements Engineering Conference (RE) 2019 27th 2019-10-29
2019 Phu X. Mai, Fabrizio Pastore, Arda Goknil, Lionel C. Briand
MCP: A Security Testing Tool Driven by Requirements
published pages: 55-58, ISSN: 0270-5257, DOI: 10.1109/icse-companion.2019.00037
2019 IEEE/ACM 41st International Conference on Software Engineering: Companion Proceedings (ICSE-Companion) 41st 2019-10-29
2019 Sadeeq Jan, Annibale Panichella, Andrea Arcuri, Lionel Briand
Search-based multi-vulnerability testing of XML injections in web applications
published pages: , ISSN: 1382-3256, DOI: 10.1007/s10664-019-09707-8
Empirical Software Engineering Volumes 24, Issues 117 2019-10-29
2019 Claudio Menghi, Paola Spoletini, Marsha Chechik, Carlo Ghezzi
A verification-driven framework for iterative design of controllers
published pages: , ISSN: 0934-5043, DOI: 10.1007/s00165-019-00484-1
Formal Aspects of Computing 2019-10-29
2019 Chetan Arora, Mehrdad Sabetzadeh, Lionel C. Briand
An empirical study on the potential usefulness of domain models for completeness checking of requirements
published pages: 2509-2539, ISSN: 1382-3256, DOI: 10.1007/s10664-019-09693-x
Empirical Software Engineering 24/4 2019-10-29
2019 Nejati, Shiva; gaaloul, Khouloud; Menghi, Claudio; Briand, Lionel; Foster, Stephen; Wolfe, David
Evaluating Model Testing and Model Checking for Finding Requirements Violations in Simulink Models
published pages: 1015-1025, ISSN: , DOI:
ACM Joint European Software Engineering Conference and Symposium on the Foundations of Software Engineering (ESEC/FSE) 27 2019-10-29
2019 Sadeeq Jan, Annibale Panichella, Andrea Arcuri, Lionel Briand
Automatic Generation of Tests to Exploit XML Injection Vulnerabilities in Web Applications
published pages: 335-362, ISSN: 0098-5589, DOI: 10.1109/tse.2017.2778711
IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering 45/4 2019-06-13
2017 Daniel Di Nardo, Fabrizio Pastore, Lionel Briand
Augmenting Field Data for Testing Systems Subject to Incremental Requirements Changes
published pages: 1-40, ISSN: 1049-331X, DOI: 10.1145/3053430
ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology 26/1 2019-06-13
2018 Ines Hajri, Arda Goknil, Lionel C. Briand, Thierry Stephany
Change impact analysis for evolving configuration decisions in product line use case models
published pages: 211-237, ISSN: 0164-1212, DOI: 10.1016/j.jss.2018.02.021
Journal of Systems and Software 139 2019-06-13
2018 Dennis Appelt, Cu D. Nguyen, Annibale Panichella, Lionel C. Briand
A Machine-Learning-Driven Evolutionary Approach for Testing Web Application Firewalls
published pages: 733-757, ISSN: 0018-9529, DOI: 10.1109/tr.2018.2805763
IEEE Transactions on Reliability 67/3 2019-06-13
2017 Chetan Arora, Mehrdad Sabetzadeh, Lionel Briand, Frank Zimmer
Automated Extraction and Clustering of Requirements Glossary Terms
published pages: 918-945, ISSN: 0098-5589, DOI: 10.1109/TSE.2016.2635134
IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering 43/10 2019-06-13
2019 Bing Liu, Shiva Nejati, Lucia, Lionel C. Briand
Effective fault localization of automotive Simulink models: achieving the trade-off between test oracle effort and fault localization accuracy
published pages: 444-490, ISSN: 1382-3256, DOI: 10.1007/s10664-018-9611-z
Empirical Software Engineering 24/1 2019-06-13
2018 Reza Matinnejad, Shiva Nejati, Lionel Briand, Thomas Bruckmann
Test Generation and Test Prioritization for Simulink Models with Dynamic Behavior
published pages: 1-1, ISSN: 0098-5589, DOI: 10.1109/tse.2018.2811489
IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering 2019-06-13
2019 Chetan Arora, Mehrdad Sabetzadeh, Shiva Nejati, Lionel Briand
An Active Learning Approach for Improving the Accuracy of Automated Domain Model Extraction
published pages: 1-34, ISSN: 1049-331X, DOI: 10.1145/3293454
ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology 28/1 2019-05-15
2018 Victor Basili, Lionel Briand, Domenico Bianculli, Shiva Nejati, Fabrizio Pastore, Mehrdad Sabetzadeh
Software Engineering Research and Industry: A Symbiotic Relationship to Foster Impact
published pages: 44-49, ISSN: 0740-7459, DOI: 10.1109/ms.2018.290110216
IEEE Software 35/5 2019-05-15
2018 José Campos, Yan Ge, Nasser Albunian, Gordon Fraser, Marcelo Eler, Andrea Arcuri
An empirical evaluation of evolutionary algorithms for unit test suite generation
published pages: 207-235, ISSN: 0950-5849, DOI: 10.1016/j.infsof.2018.08.010
Information and Software Technology 104 2019-05-15
2019 Chunhui Wang, Fabrizio Pastore, Lionel Briand
Oracles for Testing Software Timeliness with Uncertainty
published pages: 1-30, ISSN: 1049-331X, DOI: 10.1145/3280987
ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology 28/1 2019-05-15
2018 Phu X. Mai, Arda Goknil, Lwin Khin Shar, Fabrizio Pastore, Lionel C. Briand, Shaban Shaame
Modeling Security and Privacy Requirements: a Use Case-Driven Approach
published pages: 165-182, ISSN: 0950-5849, DOI: 10.1016/j.infsof.2018.04.007
Information and Software Technology 100 2019-05-15

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